By David F. Rooney
This is your big opportunity to comment on the Transportation and Parks, Recreation and Culture Master Plans.
Maps, posters and a wide variety of documents, including copies of the two master plans, are available for public scrutiny and comment in the Macpherson Room at the Community Centre every day 8:30 am – 9 pm until February 4.
Both master plans have been the subject of some controversy in recent weeks — the Transportation Master Plan because of a recommendation that the Mackenzie crossing be closed and the Parks, Recreation and Culture Plan for a proposal to renew the skateboard facility at Kovach Park.
There has also been a fair smattering of negative public comments about the City’s use of outside consultants — something Brian Mallett, the City’s director of Public Works and Engineering said is almost inevitable because consultants tend to have professional skillsets that municipal employees lack as well as an ability to make recommendations without preconceived notions of what is publicly acceptable.
“None of their ideas are written in stone — they’re just ideas,” he told the crowd of about 30 people who turned out for a Communnity Forum introducing the two master plans on Monday evening.
He said the City needs to be proactive in terms of planning for the future. It can’t afford to wait until there is a problem before looking solutions.
And public comment is an important part of the process.
“It’s your plan; it’s your nickle,” said Councillor Phil Welock, who chairs the City’s Public Works Committee. “These plans are yours to comment on.”
Welock’s comments are important. If you want your opinion to make a difference, spending a little time to look over the plans the City wants to incorporate into the Official Community Plan is a small price to pay for ensuring we all get the best set of option for future development possible.
The plans are open to public scrutiny at the Community Centre’s Macpherson Room between 8:30 am and 9 pm every day until February 4. Contract Planner Jessica Stuart will be on hand to answer questions until 4:30 pm every day.